Self Sacrifice Is Not Love

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Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License by artyfishal44

I've been reading some of the Seth Material recently and deeply resonated with the following words,

“Regardless of what you have been told, there is no merit in self-sacrifice. for one thing it is impossible. The self grows and develops. It cannot be annihilated. Usually, self sacrifice means throwing the “burden” of yourself upon someone else and making it their responsibility.”

(The Nature of Personal Reality, by Jane Roberts, page 479)

Self sacrifice is a way we negate ourselves trying to earn our own or someone else's respect and care. We rescue someone else (i.e. take responsibility for them) by sacrificing our own needs, in the distorted effort to get our needs met. The myth is … “if I take good enough care of them now, they will take good care of me someday….”

Instead, we simply fail ourselves.

We fail to empower and nurture ourselves because we wrongly think that doing so is self centered or selfish and we want to be seen as selfless.

We negate, abandon and fail ourselves and then wonder why we are unhappy. We are sure it's because someone is not taking proper care of us so we prove our willingness to sacrifice all for them in an attempt to get their love and attention. We want to feel loved and cared for but it's either not acceptable or doesn't count to give it to ourselves. We are left feeling used up, abused, hurt and resentful.

We have failed to understand that the person most in need of our love is us … ourselves. No one else can provide the love we desperately seek out there. The simple truth is that we cannot truly love anyone else until we can nurture and love ourselves simply because we will resent them for the same things we have not accepted in ourselves.

Until we can become self loving, we will go on tearing ourselves down for others and resenting them for not doing the same for us.

We have learned to call this love … in fact is is simply unnecessary and self-destructive martyrdom.


3 Responses

  1. Psychological studies show that habits of kindness to others actually contributes to happiness of the giver. The happiest people, in addition to taking care of themselves, are actually focused outside themselves, on others. You might be interested to peruse the “pursuitofhappiness” website for a summary of this research.

    When we use the word “sacrifice”, we should understand it in the traditional sense that a sacrifice is when you give up something good for the hope of something BETTER. Sacrifice makes no sense at all if what you are hoping to obtain is less than what you give up. That’s where I can agree with the point of this article, beware of self-destructive behaviors where you are giving up more than you are gaining through an act of kindness.

    But as humans, we all perceive others as equal in dignity to ourselves, and thus we recognize that justice and contribution actually make us happy. In this sense, I can give up some good for myself, so that someone else can have a better good.

    1. Hello Jonathan,
      I so appreciate your good point about developing the habit of kindness! Thank you. And, I too have found that kindness to others promotes an inner state of well-being. Gratitude is key to moving out of victim consciousness. I often get so preoccupied with speaking to the shadow side of gratitude that I forget to mention the more positive side of giving, that which comes simply from the desire to empower and share.

      The sort of “doing for others” that I describe as “rescuing” is not love based, but is a fear based state of consciousness. It prompts us to “do for others” out of a place of seeking approval, and from the incessant need to prove our own sense of self-worth to the world around us. It’s the kind of giving that doesn’t truly support those we help, even though in the moment it may appear to do so. But is instead, the kind of giving that disables, devalues, and leaves the one “helped” feeling temporarily relieved perhaps, but below the surface, they feel undermined, inadequate, less than, and more dependent on the “helper” who is rescuing them. Rather than empowering those we help, rescuing builds dependency, vulnerability, and guilt (how will I ever pay you back?).

      It is greatly helpful to look at our motives for giving to determine who we serve in our giving – ourselves or the other? When we give to get our own needs taken care of at the expense of the well-being of the other, have I really given anything at all?

      Thank you for giving me this opportunity to differentiate between giving from love versus giving from fear.

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